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Showing posts from November, 2015

Study blames NREGA for 2.4% rise in India's school dropout of adolescents, with girls pushed to domestic work

By Rajiv Shah
A new research work, which would which is likely to sound music to Prime Minister Narendra Modi’s chosen economic advisors, especially Niti Ayog vice-chairman Arvind Panagariya, says that the former UPA government’s flagship programme National Rural Employment Guarantee Scheme (NREGS), has had a negative impact on school going children, especially in the age-group 13-17.
The study, titled “Workfare and Human Capital Investment: Evidence from India”, by Manisha Shah and Bryce Millett Steinberg for the Bonn-based Institute for the Study of Labour (IZA), an independent nonprofit organization supported by the Deutsche Post Foundation, has said that in the age-group 13-17 the school dropout has been around 2.4 per cent.
Pointing out that there is a simultaneous diversion of the children in this age group to “productive work” to the tune of 2.8 per cent, the study says, it also finds that “adolescent girls are more likely to substitute for their mothers in domestic work, while bo…

India ranks No 24 in Free Expression Index among 38 countries: American think-tank Pew International survey

By Rajiv Shah
Well-known US-based think-tank, Pew Research Centre, in a new study has found that India ranks No 24 of 38 democratic countries it has surveyed for coming up with Free Expression Index (FEI). The United States ranks No 1 with an FEI of 5.73, followed by Poland (5.66), Spain (5.62), Mexico (5.4), Venezuela (5.17), and Canada (5.18).
The country that ranks the worst is Senegal with an FEI of 2.06. While Jordan ranks second from the bottom an FEI of 2.58, India’s neighbour, Pakistan, despite having a democratic government today, ranks third from the bottom, with an FEI of 2.78. The mean index, however, is 4.07, which is higher than that of India.
A non-partisan think-tank, the Pew study seeks to examine global public opinion about democratic principles. It is based on 40,786 face-to-face and telephone interviews in 38 countries with adults 18 and above, conducted from April 5 to May 21, 2015.
Authored by Richard Wike and Katie Simmons, the study states, “Although many observe…

Women, old "neglected" by Indian healthcare system, which fails to take into account "societal needs": Lancet study

By By Rajiv Shah
Making a scathing critique of the prevailing social bias in collection of data on health in India, a recent study published in the well-known global health journal “Lancet” has said that “about 80% of patients visit a private practitioner, which they do at their own expense”, yet most “health-related data are obtained from public hospitals and public health-care service units.”
Pointing out that public facilities provide “only 20% of all outpatient care in India”, hence they do not provide “a true picture of the whole morbidity profile in India”, the study says, this is one reason why the most representative National Family Health Survey (NFHS), collects “little information about disease patterns”, and depends on “self-reports”.
Pointing out that this results in “under-reporting of disease patterns”, the study says, result is that health related data collected by the NFHS is confined to collecting facts on "fertility, infant and child mortality, contraception and fa…

CII: Growth in sales down from 8.8% to 2.8% in a year, corporateprofits go into negative, wither Make in India?

By Rajiv Shah
The Confederation of Indian Industries (CII), India’s powerful organization of top corporate giants, has declared that the “corporate results at the end of first quarter of current fiscal (2015-16) painted a rather gloomy picture, as the financial performance of Indian companies, especially manufacturing sector firms, deteriorated.”
In a just-released analysis, the CII said, “A lower than expected 7.0 per cent GDP growth in the reporting quarter could not salvage the cause, even as the rate cuts by the RBI provided some respite.” It added, even the ambitious Make in India campaign of Prime Minister Narendra Modi has failed to make a difference, with India “struggling to keep face in the international trade arena.”
Giving an analysis of the financial performance during the first quarter of 2015-16 of 2,422 manufacturing companies and 1167 service firms extracted from the Ace Equity database, the CII said, “Growth in net sales on an aggregate basis stood at a measly 2.8 per …

Modi's Jan Dhan scheme "lacks" any explicit purpose; India's accounts penetration worst among BRICS nations: World Bank

By Rajiv Shah
A new report by the World Bank, “Global Findex Database 2014: Measuring Financial Inclusion Around the World”, has said that the Government of India’s high-profile Jan Dhan scheme, launched for bank transfer subsidies to the poorer sections of India’s population, has been lacking any “explicit purpose”, one reason why around 43 per cent of the country’s accounts are "dormant."
The report, whose Indian survey is based on what it calls “face-to-face” interview with around 3,000 lower middle class sections of the population between September 7 and October 15, 2015, said, “In South Asia about 40 percent have an account classified as dormant. One possible reason for this is the large number of accounts opened within the past year in India, many of which were set up without an explicit purpose in mind.”
The report, which has been authored by Asli Demirguc-Kunt, Leora Klapper, Dorothe Singer and Peter Van Oudheusden, has found that the account penetration in India of all…